It’s official, the UK-bound new-for-2015 Polo GTI range will start at £18,850 when deliveries begin in March next year. With order books now open, the heavily revised version of the range-topping performance Polo will be available with three or five doors, and a choice of six-speed manual and seven-speed DSG gearboxes.
The Polo GTI will cost £18,850 RRP OTR for the three-door manual with a £630 premium for five doors and an extra £1245 for the DSG gearbox. The most expensive version, the five-door seven-speed DSG, will be £20,725.
The New Polo GTI had its debut at the 2014 Paris motor show in October. Powered by a new 1.8-litre TSI turbocharged engine developing 189bhp (11bhp over the pre-refresh model), the new hot shot Polo can sprint to 62mph from rest in 6.7 seconds and tops out at 146mph.
The engine delivers its power between 4200-6200rpm (manual, 5400-6200rpm DSG) and records torque outputs of 236lb ft/320Nm (manual) at 1450-4200rpm. The DSG-equipped car is a little down on pulling power due to the limitations of the semi-automated gearbox, but is still capable of 184lb ft/250Nm at 1250-5300rpm.
Power and parsimony
But with that power comes new-found parsimony: Volkswagen quotes an economy figure of 50.4mpg for the new Polo GTI and emissions of only 129g/km (manual, 47.1mpg and 139g/km for the DSG version).
Completing the new Polo GTI’s technical make-up is a £245 ‘Sport Performance Pack’, which includes Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC) switchable dampers. Sportier steering feel, sharper accelerator response and increased engine noise thanks to an in-car actuator are also part of the optional package.
The 2015 Polo GTI is also fitted with ESC Sport, which like the Golf GTI, enables the electronic stability control system to be switched off for use on the track. Working in two stages, first the traction control is switched off, then ESC Sport is activated which increases the ESC threshold and delays intervention (without ESC being completely deactivated).
Another Golf GTI feature is XDS+. Standard on the Polo GTI, XDS compensates for the understeer which is typical of front-wheel drive cars, meaning driving characteristics are more precise and neutral. Volkswagen has much confidence in the handling of the new car, and officially presented it to the press at the Circuit de la Comunitat Valenciana Ricardo Tormo in Spain.
GTI styling flourishes
As is de rigueur for sports Volkswagens, the Polo GTI boasts specific GTI styling flourishes. New bumpers, GTI badges, 17-inch ‘Parabolica’ alloy wheels and red strips which frame the honeycomb grille and extended into the headlights all feature. Lowered suspension (front 10mm, rear 15mm) is also standard.
LED headlamps make their debut on a Polo, while ‘Dark Red’ tinted rear lights, a larger roof spoiler, black grained diffuser and dual chrome exhaust pipes signify to other drivers that they are following the newest version of the Polo GTI.
Inside, the black and red theme continues. A leather three-spoke sports steering wheel with ‘GTI’ logo and red stitching nod to the Golf GTI, as do the red-edged floor mats. The chequered ‘Clark’-trimmed cloth seats with black bolsters have been a GTI styling touch since the first Golf GTI in 1976.
2015 VOLKSWAGEN POLO GTI PRICES (UK)
Polo GTI 1.8 3dr 189bhp 6-spd manual: £18,850
Polo GTI 1.8 5dr 189bhp 6-spd manual: £19,480
Polo GTI 1.8 3dr 189bhp 7-spd DSG: £20,095
Polo GTI 1.8 5dr 189bhp 7-spd DSG: £20,725
For more details, visit www.volkswagen.co.uk.